Tubers and The Tetons

Thursday, July 9, 2020 - 3:23pm


Jon Bender


Hello everyone from everywhere! My name Jon Bender but my friends call me Jonny B. I am a Student at Walla Walla Community College in Eastern Washington where I am pursuing duel degrees in Irrigation Management and Energy Systems Technology with a focus in Precision Agriculture.  This summer my project will consist of assessing accuracy of soil moisture probes in the Teton Valley, monitoring plant populations and lending a helping hand whenever possible. I am excited to be part of the team and experience all the meaningful work that HFF is striving to accomplish. The adaptability of everyone committed to the Henry’s Fork Foundation’s mission is inspiring. It has been interesting to see how challenges can produce amazing results. Distance communication, Tuesdays’ online seminars and other forms of communication are leading the charge to insure the voice of the river continues to be shared. 


The first few weeks of the internship really opened my eyes to the complexity and diversity of the region. Thanks to the material covered in our classes I have a greater appreciation for the unique area I am grateful to call home this summer. After classes, I began to work with my mentor Bryce Contor (who has the best one liners that had me grinning ear to ear) on field work  and have gained a better understanding about how crucial partnership with various groups is producing beneficial results.  With much of my time this summer spent independently there has been great opportunities to listen to the wind, birds, and the rush of the river as many do when enjoying the breathtaking surroundings. In my free time I plan to explore as much of the trails and river as possible.


Soil moisture sensors in a potato field


Quinoa grown at higher elevation


Mesa Falls


Collecting soil samples


Sunset at Harriman State Park